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What Steps Can I Take to Protect Against Child Abuse?

Posted on in Divorce

Los Gatos divorce attorney for child abuse and restraining ordersThere are a wide variety of reasons why couples choose to obtain a  divorce. In some cases, divorce is the result of the breakdown of a marriage, which allows spouses to end a relationship that is no longer working. However, there are also situations in which a person pursues divorce to protect the safety of family members. In cases involving child abuse, separating from your spouse and ending your marriage may be necessary to protect your child from further abuse. If you believe that your spouse has committed abuse against your child, you should speak with a knowledgeable attorney to determine your legal options. Some steps you can take to protect your family’s safety include:

Get a Restraining Order 

If you are afraid for the safety and well-being of your child, you can receive a protective order prohibiting your spouse from committing any further acts of abuse. Under California law, a Domestic Violence Restraining Order may place a number of requirements on your spouse, including ordering that they cannot contact you or your children and that they must stay away from your home, your workplace, and your children’s schools. 

If you do not feel safe in your home, you may want to remove yourself from the situation, and this may mean staying temporarily with a friend or family member or in a domestic violence shelter. Whether you will be staying in your home or moving to a new location, a Domestic Violence Restraining Order can help provide for your needs by requiring your spouse to pay child support and/or spousal support, pay for certain expenses, or turn over certain property to you. If you need to obtain a restraining order, a family law attorney can help you understand your rights and complete the necessary steps.

Pursue a Divorce

The best way to ensure that your child will not face abuse from your spouse is to permanently separate from them and legally end your marriage. After taking steps to remove yourself and your children from an abusive situation and obtain a restraining order, you can focus on the legal process of dissolving your marriage. Due to the continuing risks of abuse, you may wish to pursue sole custody of your child, and you may ask for your spouse to be restricted to supervised visitation with your children. If you have experienced domestic violence or abuse in your household, it may be best to avoid attempting to settle your divorce through mediation. Instead, you may need to litigate your divorce in the courtroom. A skilled divorce attorney can advocate for your rights and work to protect your children’s safety throughout the legal process. 

Contact a Los Gatos Family Law Attorney

Divorce is never easy, but ending a relationship with an abusive spouse can be critical to the health and well-being of your family. Attorney Benita Ventresca will assist you in reporting instances of abuse, requesting a protective order, and filing for divorce. She will do everything in her power to expedite the divorce process while also ensuring that your children’s best interests will be protected when making decisions about child custody and visitation. To schedule a free initial consultation with a compassionate Los Gatos, CA divorce lawyer, call us today at 408-395-8822. 

Sources 

https://www.courts.ca.gov/1260.htm?rdeLocaleAttr=en

 

https://www.courts.ca.gov/selfhelp-domesticviolence.htm

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Los Gatos, CA 95030

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